The end of summer has everyone dreaming of crisp autumn air, leaf peeping and everything pumpkin spice flavored. The time for summer’s green leaves to evolve into a burst of golden hues is just around the corner and the celebrated New England region boasts some of the best foliage viewing in the country with leaves hitting their peak autumn color palette anywhere from mid-September to the first couple weeks of October.
Here are five destinations to check out this fall for next-level leaf peeping:
Hanover Inn Dartmouth (Hanover, NH)
New England charm pairs with modern amenities to create unforgettable stays at this AAA Four-Diamond hotel. Overlooking the Dartmouth College Green, Hanover Inn is situated along the Vermont- New Hampshire boarder, and a quintessential stop for leaf peeping in the fall. Guests can hear the crunch of leaves as they explore New Hampshire’s stunning Upper Valley where the vibrant array of reds, yellows and oranges fill the region. For those looking for adventure, an easy 1.4-mile sunrise hike up Gile Mountain will leave you breathless (in a good way) as you take in the sights and sounds of one of the area’s most extensive natural vistas.
The Equinox Golf Resort & Spa (Manchester Village, VT)
Located in the heart of Vermont’s strikingly beautiful Green Mountains, The Equinox is in a prime location for outdoor explorations and viewing fall foliage in southern Vermont. With forests covering the surrounding Green Mountains, featuring the highest percentage of vibrant maple trees anywhere, Manchester, The Equinox and all of Vermont explodes with colors once the leaves start to turn. There are endless options when it comes to viewing fall foliage in unique and different ways during a stay at The Equinox. Some of these activities include off-road driving, fly fishing, canoeing and kayaking, or even an aerial treetop adventure. Don’t forget to stop in at the resort’s Falcon Bar to enjoy more than 50 varieties of wine and single-malt scotches – the perfect spot to review the day’s exploits.
Spruce Point Inn (Boothbay Harbor, ME)
Spruce Point Inn is exactly what most guests picture when they think of a coastal New England resort. Perfectly poised between woods and sea, the historic inn is the ideal “off the beaten path” fall getaway. Situated on a 100-acre private peninsula, the historic trails provide an impeccable place to immerse yourself in the scenes of fall foliage. For guests that enjoy road biking, the back roads of Spruce Point and the “east side” of the harbor also provide a great way to explore the resort’s private peninsula during the autumn season. Plus, Spruce Point Inn offers Marshmology (s’mores) to round out the day with homemade marshmallows created from the resort’s secret recipe and infused with a variety of special flavors (like Maine blueberries). S’mores, the sight of fire and the scent of woodsmoke make for a classic fall evening along the coast of Maine.
The Essex, Vermont’s Culinary Resort & Spa (Essex, VT)
Set on 18 acres between Vermont’s Green Mountains and Lake Champlain, just minutes from downtown Burlington, The Essex, Vermont’s Culinary Resort & Spa is a true destination unto itself. Add in the beauty of fall in Vermont, and The Essex is the ultimate bucket-list escape when it comes to sightseeing and adventure. Burlington is the unofficial Northeast capital of maple syrup, fall leaves and craft beer, making The Essex a great spot for a fall adventure. Guests can view the surrounding foliage by kayak or canoe, hiking, biking and even above air with paragliding or a hot air balloon ride. Lastly, round out your stay at The Essex with a cooking class at New England’s premier culinary destination and create a mouthwatering meal or take a peek at how the pros put together a meal with a curated dinner experience.
Boston Harbor Hotel (Boston, MA)
Escape to the Boston Harbor Hotel where you will arrive at luxurious accommodations overlooking city lights and infinite waters. Boston’s autumnal flair makes for the ideal fall getaway as the leaves perfectly complement the city’s historic architecture, making it one of the most beautiful seasons to visit. For ultimate leaf peeping, wander through the Rose Kennedy Greenway and enjoy 1.5 miles of art, experiences and nature with a city skyline backdrop. Also nearby, the Freedom Trail is a 2.5-mile route that leads to 16 historically significant sites, allowing visitors to discover the rich history of the American Revolution. Back at the hotel, guests can partake in afternoon tea where they will be presented with a selection of teas to accompany delicate and delicious savory petit sandwiches and pastries while enjoying the harbor views – all of which makes for a memorable and relaxing afternoon in Boston.